Building a Responsive Electronic Instrument (MCO2000.01)

Cecilia Lopez

This class will focus on imagining and developing electronic set-ups for use in improvisation. Over the course of the term, students will develop at least two different electronic set-ups or instruments. We will look at artists using electronics in music and improvisation, such as Zeena Parkins, Laetitia Sonami, Ikue Mori, Peter Blasser, and John Driscoll, and discuss their instruments and conceptual approach.  We will do workshops on the use of piezoelectric microphones, mixers, and other accessible amplification methods, to encourage students to include these in their practice. The class will include improvisation exercises in solos, duos, and trios, in order to challenge our instruments and ideas. We will also read and discuss texts on the subject. Small text responses, recordings and other assignments will be required during the class.

We will be combining acoustic instruments and everyday objects with electronics, so students with or without electronics/music experience are encouraged to apply. Students should write a brief note to the instructor expressing their interest in the class. This class is well-complemented with the Improvisation Ensemble course.

Learning Outcomes:
-Understand basic electronic set-ups for improvisation purposes
-Think conceptually about the use of electronics in improvisation
-Build their own electronic instruments
-Learn how to build contract microphones and simple devices for amplification purposes
-Gain vocabulary practice in improvisation strategies to feel comfortable in collective improvisation settings

Delivery Method: Fully in-person
Course Level: 2000-level
Credits: 4
F 8:30AM - 12:10PM (Full-term)
Maximum Enrollment: 12
Course Frequency: One time only

Categories: All courses , Composition , Fully In-Person
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